Tuesday, February 4, 2014

God's Greatness & The "D" Word

Hey guys!  I know, it's been another whole month since I've written, but I've been quite busy with life changes.  For those of you who don't know, Jon is in the Army.  I haven't made a big deal over us being a military family on the blog for several reasons, I think.  There is the obviousness of career being a personal thing to post about on social media.  However, way more important than that is the conscious effort for both Jon and I to find our identities in Christ alone, not in being a military family, or anything else for that matter.  With that said, the Army has been absolutely wonderful for us.  I hope Jon can say the same, but I absolutely love it aside from the time he is away from home.  Since becoming an Army wife, I have been extremely impressed with all of the resources and networks the military works so hard to provide to assist us in our day to day lives.  I am beyond grateful.
Then comes the "D" word...deployment...the word I'm currently struggling most to be grateful for.  He's been gone about two weeks now.  It's interesting because Jon and I knew it was coming, even months before the wedding, we knew.  We talked about it, planned around it, prayed over it.  I do not say this for pity, sympathy or attention, but it really is true that deployment is something you cannot understand the feeling of until your experience it.  I'll tell you what; it so makes me appreciate all of the families who have done this before.  Thank you.
What's more important than the worldly trials we experience are the lessons God teaches us in these trials.  It is so easy to adopt the "why us?" mentality in difficult seasons, but that mentality is exactly the wrong one to have.  The reality is that this life is not about Jon and I, but about God.  Oh my goodness, how my flesh fights against this incredible Truth.  In looking ahead to this time, I knew deep down that the trial would be good.  I knew that 3 months of happily wedded bliss would be an appropriate amount of time to enjoy what a beautiful gift God had given us, but also enough time for Jon and I to begin to be tempted to look to one another in areas of our marriage where we should be looking to our Father.  Submitting to this in my mind was much easier than submitting to this in my heart, and I praise God for His grace and mercy as I have struggled in my heart with His great plan for our lives.  Time and time again, we learn and say how much greater His plan is than our own, and it continues to amaze me how much selfishness I exhibit when placed in a position to struggle and growth in the Light.
It has been so evident to me just how much God desires our hearts.  To me, that seems to be a huge reason for why He has us in a deployment now...not because God is punishing us, or wants us to be unhappy, or because He doesn't care, or because He is so busy being God that He doesn't see our struggle, but because He loves us and desires our affections.  What better way to bring Jon and I to our knees than this?  Above anything this deployment shows us how deeply God desires for us to be in constant dependency of Him, and how strongly He wants us to trust Him.
One thing that has had me in complete awe is the tremendous sense of God's nearness in this situation.  In every other serious trial of my life I have cried out to the Lord, not knowing where He is or what He is doing.  However, throughout each day of this struggle I feel God so close and so eager to be closer.  It really is amazing.  To be in such pain, such heartache and longing, but to feel such comfort, peace and hope in the nearness of Jesus is something I cannot begin to explain, but it's there.  He is there.  This has led me to ponder deeply over joy.  Again, so many times in bible studies we talk about what it is to be joyful, and that joy and happiness are different.  It's now that I experience joy, pure joy, in the inexplicable nearness of a God who will never leave us nor forsake us, a God who desires us far more than Jon and I could ever desire one another and a God who knows the pain of heartache and longing far more than we could ever fathom even in a deployment that separates us.  To know Him more, even in the midst of pain, we are so joyful.


  1. Thank you to Jon for his service! I know it is a sacrifice for wives like you and families as well. Praying for y'all during this tough time- I'm so glad you have such a positive outlook! God is good and worthy of our trust :)

  2. Beautifully written, Claire! I love seeing how The Lord is working in your heart, as well as in your marriage. I can't even imagine how tough a deployment is, but I know that God will see you through! I'm looking forward to a post about when Jon finally comes home : )

  3. Just found your blog through Megan at Just Megan, and oh my goodness, what a beautifully written post! Seeing someone like you who manages to live a Christ-centered life despite something so tough really puts things in perspective for me! I'm praying for y'all and can't wait to keep up with your deployment journey :)

  4. Aww, thank you ladies so much for your prayers and support! It means so much to have such a wonderful network of sisters in the blogging community. Christ is my strength for sure, and any efforts I make myself are nothing compared to simply abiding in Him.